Japan is a country with a unique flavor. Its individual inner peace and traditions amaze with its beauty and tranquility. Its special harmony is present in any local detail. Absolutely every city in this beautiful country deserves special attention. But to start acquaintance with Japan is with Kyoto.
This amazing city is located in the central part of Honshu Island, Kyoto Prefecture. It is considered the main cultural center of the country. And it is no accident, there are many historical and cultural attractions.
When to go
The climate is typical for Asian countries – hot and humid summer, winter – dry and cold. The best time to travel to Kyoto is of course from April to May, when the cherry blossom season takes place and from October to November during the red maple season. These are the most pleasant and warm days in Kyoto, with the least amount of precipitation. Of course, the rest of the time there are advantages, for example, the lack of a large number of tourists in popular places of the city.
How to get there
Kyoto is easily accessible from almost any airport in the country. For example, from Kansai International Airport, located in Osaka, there is a Haruka Express, which takes you to Kyoto in an hour and a half. Tickets for it can be purchased at the Airport.
Here you can buy Wi-Fi routers with a package of Internet traffic, SIM cards and many useful things for independent travelers.
Where to stay
In Kyoto, there is no problem with choosing places to stay. Plenty of excellent hotels and apartments. Those who want to save will be pleased with a large number of pleasant, cozy and relatively inexpensive hostels, which are usually located right in the areas of many attractions. For example, the famous Gion district has more than ten excellent hostels.
Another type of housing will appreciate those wishing to live in the traditional Japanese style. They’re the Ryokans. The largest number of them is in Kyoto. Ryokan is a hotel where rooms are made according to all the canons of traditional housing in Japan. The floor in these rooms is lined with tatami, and the sliding doors are made of bamboo. The room has a small table around which it is customary to sit on the floor. Instead of regular beds here are covered futons right on the floor. These rooms usually do not have a bathroom, and guests use a common bath.
What to see
Fushimi Inari Temple
To get to this place, you need to go to the Inari metro station and cross the railway tracks on a special crossing. And then just follow the crowd of people. There are a lot of people who want to visit this ancient Shinto temple all year round. The road to the temple of the goddess Inari, located at the top of Mount Inariyama, has a length of 4 km and takes 2-3 hours in time. It all depends on the speed of your stride and endurance. Thousands of ritual bright orange gates – thorium accompany your way to the Shrine. These famous gates were built on donations. Throughout the road, there are many statues of Titsune foxes. This sacred fox is one of the main symbols of this place. The largest number of believers comes here in the Japanese New Year.
At the foot of Mount Inariyama is a street food market. Here you can try the famous Japanese treat – Takoyaki. These are balls of dough, grilled, stuffed with octopus. This is an incredibly tasty and hearty dish. Also here are prepared a variety of small kebabs of chicken, beef, seafood and many other dishes of Japanese cuisine.
Gion is the most popular district of Hanamati. It is the most famous area of residence and work of Japanese geisha and their Maiko students. These beautiful women, dressed in ceremonial kimono, can be found leisurely strolling among the sprawling Yves.
Most of Gion’s buildings are old small wooden houses, which house cozy cafes, restaurants and, of course, tea houses. In local shops, you can buy a kimono, as well as buy accessories for it and a variety of incense.
Gion is a great place to walk. There is an amazing atmosphere of traditional Japan and its own individual lurking world.
Arashiyama Bamboo Grove
On the outskirts of Kyoto is the famous Arashiyama Park. It is home to one of the most popular tourist destinations, the Sagano Bamboo Forest. Its territory is quite extensive. You can walk on special trails. The forest itself is fenced with hedges, the entrance there is forbidden. There are always a lot of visitors. Therefore, the best time to visit this attraction is early morning and late evening, because in this period there are fewer people.
Kinkaku-Ji Golden Temple
In the Area of Kita, near the Sagano Bamboo Forest, there is a Kinkaku-Ji temple. Its walls are decorated with sheets of pure gold. This beautiful temple is easily accessible by bus straight from the bamboo forest. Kinkaku-Ji Temple is located in a picturesque location on Lake Kyohoti. The water in this lake is clear, and the temple is reflected in it. In any weather, it is very beautiful!
It’s a very convenient viewing plan. The guests who came along the path come to the ticket offices, buy tickets and go on to the temple itself. Then on another path return to the exit. Therefore, there is no pandemonium and confusion at the exit and entrance.
There are several shops on the temple grounds where you can buy souvenirs and gifts, which will then remind you of the beautiful Golden Temple of Kinkaku-Ji.
Kyoto is a great place to relax the soul, and to find harmony with yourself. Here all conditions are created for a comfortable independent journey, everything is easy and accessible. In the metro, all the names of stations and lines are duplicated in English, and sympathetic local people are always ready to help and tell you the way.